Two-handled cup and cover on stand
Overall: 27 1/4 x 17 1/2 x 11 in. ( 69.2 x 44.4 x 27.9 cm )
engraved: on the left side of the plinth: "UNDER ARTICLE XII of the Will of John Pierpoint Morgan/ the following members of the/ CORSAIR DINING CLUB/ recieve the pieces of silver bequeathed/ Charles Lanier/ George Sullivan Bowdoin/ Frank Knight Sturgis/ J
Wrought and cast presentation silver two-handled cup and cover on a plinth; urn-shped body with alternating narrow and wide flutes with hammer patination between and "Islamic" style scroll work above around the lower body; molded midband with trefoil and scrolled shell motifs; center of the upper body engraved, "Frank Knight Sturgis/ 1915" in gothic script; upper body flared slightly to the rim with an applied band of repoussé chased circles and beads; stepped and domed cover, dome repoussé chased with same fluting as lower body and surmounted by an oversized urn-shaped knop finial with chased circle band, foliate bands on either side of a molded midband and a ball finial; pair of cast double-scroll handles with acanthus grips on each side; seated on a wrought hour-glass-shaped pedestal with a molded midband, fluted band, and band of foliate decoration; pedestal applied to a square base; base seated on a square plinth with a band of circles and beads around the top and a band of foliate decoration around the base; plinth engraved on three sides, front repoussé chased with an image of the two masted sailboat "Corsair," right side engraved, "UNDER ARTICLE XII of the Will of John Pierpoint Morgan/ the following members of the/ CORSAIR DINING CLUB/ receive the pieces of silver bequeathed/ Charles Lanier/ George Sullivan Bowdoin/ Frank Knight Sturgis/ Joseph Hodges Choate/ Chauncey Mitchel Depew/ William Rockefeller/ Louis Cass Ledyard/ Charles Steele/ John Pierpoint Morgan/ George Lockhart Rives/ Francis Randall Appleton" in script and block letters and on the right side of the plinth, "EXTRACT FROM THE WILL OF JOHN PIERPOINT MORGAN/ ARTICLE XII I give and bequeath to each of/ the members of the Corsair Club at the time of/ my death as a souvenir of my self and asa token/ of my personal affection for them a piece/ of silver *** to be selected and purchased / for the purpose by the executors of my will" in block letters and script; makers' marks stamped on the inside of the plinth.
Gilded Age wealth and fraternity are embodied in this monumental loving cup, one of fourteen made for the members of the Corsair Dining Club after the death of its founder, financier J. P. Morgan (1837-1913) in 1913. Formed in 1883, the dining club was an exclusive collective of associates who regularly gathered for elegant dinners. In his will, Morgan stipulated: "I give and bequeath to each of the members of the Corsair Club, . . . a souvenir of myself and as a token of my personal affection for them, a piece of silver of the value of One Thousand Dollars, to be selected and purchased for the purpose by the executors of my will." After Morgan's death, his executor, J. P. Morgan, Jr., collaborated with fellow dining club member Frank Knight Sturgis (1847-1932) on the commissions. Sturgis's proposal of "a George II vase of dignity & proportion with a base and an inscription" comparable to English loving cups of the 1730s and 1740s was executed by the firm of Dominick & Haff and distributed to Corsair members in March 1914.
Bequest of Frank Knight Sturgis
Estate of J. P. Morgan (1837-1913); to Frank Knight Sturgis (1847-1932), the donor.
Due to ongoing research, information about this object is subject to change.